Centennial Child Custody Attorneys
Helping Families Navigate the Child Custody Process in Douglas, Arapahoe, Jefferson, Adams, Denver, Boulder, El Paso Counties, & Surrounding Areas
Solutions Based Family Law is dedicated to providing clients with comprehensive legal counsel.
If you are involved in or will be involved in a child custody case in Centennial or the surrounding areas, our firm can help you understand your legal rights and options, the laws concerning your case, popular co-parenting schedules, and other information relevant to your case. We can also help with cases in which a parent is trying to relocate with the child post-divorce.
Is Colorado a Mother State for Child Custody?
Many people believe that the state and court automatically side with the mother in child custody cases. However, that cannot be further from the truth. Colorado family law courts do not side with either parent but rather focus on the best interest of the child.
The court cannot legally consider either party’s:
- Income or salary
- Sexual orientation
- Genetic information (excluding paternity information)
- Education level
- Relational issues (i.e. adultery within the relationship)
- Attendance in therapy
- Disability status
Can a Child Choose Which Parent to Live With in Colorado?
Yes and no. The child's choice will not be regarded as the final decision, but it may influence the judge's ruling in the custody case.
If parents cannot agree on a custody schedule, the court will have to determine what parenting plan will work best. When making the determination, the judge will consider a variety of factors and information, including the child’s preference. Children can express their opinion concerning whom they want to live with for the majority of the year, as well as how much time they want to spend with the other party.
Legally, a child only has to be “sufficiently mature” enough to express their opinion with the court; thus, a child’s age does not determine when they can express their preference. However, judges often give more weight to the preferences of older children.
Best Interest of the Child in Colorado
As we mentioned, the court will take multiple factors into account when making child custody determinations.
C.R.S. § 14-10-124 (1.5) outlines factors a judge will consider when ruling on child custody, such as:
- The wishes of both parents
- The child’s preference
- The child’s relationship with both parties, siblings, extended families, and their parent’s significant others
- The school, community, and home to which the child is accustomed
- Whether either parent is considering relocating with the child after divorce
- Each parent’s relationship and behavior toward one another (as it relates to their willingness to cooperate with one another and foster a positive relationship between the other party and the child)
- Each parent’s willingness to prioritize the best interest of the child
- The mental, physical, and emotional health of both parents
- The distance between the parent’s residences
- Each parent’s willingness and ability to make decisions together
- Allegations or a history of substance abuse or domestic abuse
What Is Considered an Unfit Parent in Colorado?
A parent can be deemed unfit if they endanger the welfare of a child or fail to meet the child’s needs in some way. However, before a parent is declared unfit, the court will determine parental unfitness, such as:
- Whether the parent has a mental health disorder or another disability that affects their capacity to care for a child.
- Whether the parent has a history of acting in a way that makes them unfit.
- Whether the child has a history of sustaining physical abuse.
- Whether the parent ah already terminated their parent-child relationship.
- Whether the parent has a history of violence (against anyone including the child).
- Any other evidence or relevant information.
If a parent has been accused of being unfit, authorities can step in, or the other parent’s attorney may file a motion requesting a fitness hearing. After the official request is made, a date will be set for the hearing, where the court will review the evidence and decide whether the accused is unfit.
Retain Our Services
Backed by decades of collective legal experience, Solutions Based Family Law is known for providing high-quality, personalized legal counsel to our clients.
We understand that you are trusting our firm during one of the most challenging times of your life, and we do not take that trust lightly. Our child custody attorneys will work tirelessly to achieve the best possible case results. We take a client-centered approach to cases and tailor our case approach to uniquely address each case and client.
In addition, we can also help clients who are looking to modify their child custody arrangement.
Involved in a custody case? Complete our online form to discuss your case with our Centennial child custody attorneys.